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  1. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Quote Originally Posted by Friget_Sparrky View Post
    would this be the same for other refrigerants?
    I am not sure but this is the worst of the refrigerants I have found. You can look up the MSDS (material safety data sheets) for any chemical you want to. There are maximum exposure recommendations and ppe recommendations for just about any chemical known to man. All refrigerants can be harmful if allowed to accumulate at high levels. They displace oxygen and can dilute it enough to suffocate.

    Some chemicals, we don't have enough info on one way or another. The less exposure to anything the better. You can drink hydrochloric acid if it is diluted enough, ammonia under your sink is less harmful than anhydrous (refrigerant) ammonia because it is diluted. I would recommend looking up the MSDS for any refrigerant you work with to see what information is known and what precautions to take. It is not a bad idea to error on the side of caution.

    Also, it seems like politics has some influence on MSDS data so don't take it as gospel. Last time I looked at the one for gasoline, (or was it diesel) it said there wasn't enough information to determine whether it is a carcinogen (which I find hard to believe there is not enough info.) But it is probably best to limit exposure as much as possible. No reason to wash your face with it.

    Here is the DuPont MSDS page for refrigerants. All the other manufaturers have them as well, this was just easy for me to find:

  2. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    I would think welding and creating phosgen gas would do more harm. I know my skin turns red and tingles when i weld around certain refrigerants. imagine what it is doing on the insides.

  3. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    las vegas
    when 134 first came out i heard that it could possibly
    cause testicular cancer in men but had no medical effects
    on women. never saw anything in any of our trade
    mags or msds sheets to verify it but im sure that most
    of our refrigerants have some kind of an effect but the
    risks are very low.

  4. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    We will all get the big C.
    I would be more worried if you are boiler guy more than a refer guy. Many a boiler techs I know have lung cancer, half of them smoke.

  5. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    People exposed to refrigerant can suffer a variety of symptoms depending upon the length of exposure time. Those exposed to high concentrations of refrigerant for a short period of time often suffer from irritation, increased heart sensitivity or an increased heart rate. In some cases, exposure to high concentrations of refrigerant can be lethal. Long-term exposure to refrigerants can cause cancer, mutagenicity (changes to cells) or reproductive problems.

    Refrigerant leaks in enclosed environments can also cause suffocation. When refrigerant is leaked into a room, it pushes oxygen out. Lack of oxygen can be harmful or fatal if there is not enough air to support respiration

    Read more: Refrigerant Leak Hazards |

  6. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, or NIOSH, reports deaths caused by abnormal heart rhythms and suffocation in workers exposed to refrigerants in confined spaces. (Reference 2) "Sudden sniffing death syndrome" can result from exposure to refrigerants. (Reference 4) This syndrome happens when an inhalant abuser is startled, causing a release of adrenalin that stops the heart, explains American Family Physician. (Reference 1) Cardiac arrest and death can result from overexposure to refrigerants, according to an article in the August 2008 issue of the journal Environmental Health. (Reference 3)

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    Exposure to dangerous levels of refrigerants resulting from abuse or occupation can have serious adverse effects on the heart. (Reference 4) Refrigerants are toxic to the heart and can result in heart attacks, high blood pressure and abnormal heart rhythms leading to circulatory collapse, according to the Environmental Health article. (Reference 3) NIOSH advises workers with potential exposure to refrigerants follow their guidelines regarding awareness, training, engineering controls, hazards in confined spaces, medical considerations and personal protective equipment such as respiratory protection and chemical protective clothing, to reduce the risk of death. (Reference 2)

    Refrigerent Poisoning
    Refrigerant poisoning can result from exposure, according to UMMC. Symptoms include throat swelling, difficulty breathing, severe throat pain, loss of vision, burning of the eyes, nose, lips and tongue, burns of the esophagus, vomiting blood, blood in the stool, severe abdominal pain, abnormal heart rhythm and circulatory collapse. Death is possible. Emergency medical care is required. Outcome after refrigerant poisoning depends on how severe the poisoning was, and how fast medical help began. Irreversible brain damage and severe lung damage can result. (Reference 4)

    Read more:

  7. #20
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    HFC R134a
    Non-Global Warming (GWP negligible) Global Warming (GWP of 3200 on Greenpeace calculations and publications
    Non-Ozone Depleting Non-Ozone Depleting
    Non-Toxic Animal testing has indicated that with repeated exposure Benign testicular cancer may develop

    Postmortem will indicate increased organ weight

    Hazardous hydrofluoric acid and possible carbonyl fluoride (both of which can cause severe central nervous system reactions)

    Human testing has indicated that with repeated and/or high concentration single exposure humans may experience any of the following: Reduced oxygen intake
    Temporary alteration of hearts electrical activity
    Irregular pulse or palpitations
    Inadequate circulation
    Heart irregularities
    Tremors and other central nervous system symptoms
    Unconsciousness or death
    Thermal decompostion forms (exposure to open flame, glowing metal surfaces)

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